British Open: Portrush sets attendance record behind St. Andrews

British Open: Portrush sets attendance record behind St. Andrews

2019 British Open

British Open: Portrush sets attendance record behind St. Andrews

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PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland – The 148th Open Championship is already in the record books even though 2011 Open champion Darren Clarke has yet to strike the first tee shot.

Local boy Clarke kicks off Royal Portrush’s first return to big time golf since 1951 safe in the knowledge that the course will attract more fans this week than any other Open venue apart from the Old Course at St. Andrews.

“The 148th Open has not only been a sell out, but I can confirm to you that this week will see our biggest attendance outside of St. Andrews, with 237,750 spectators,” R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers said. “It surpasses the 235,000 we saw at Royal Birkdale in 2017. So this becomes the second highest attended Open Championship of all time.”

The 2000 Open Championship at St. Andrews hold the attendance record, when 239,000 turning up for Tiger Woods’ victory.

Fans under age 25 account for 30,000 of the above number, with 21,000 kids taking advantage of the R&A’s “Kids Go Free” admission policy for children under 16 accompanied by an adult.

A record-breaking 61,000 fans have attended practice days, surpassing the previous high of 52,000 set at Royal Liverpool in 2006.

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